Lockdown diaries: What’s keeping Mike Hesson busy in Bengaluru?

The seasoned New Zealand coach, Mike Hesson, is watching cricket videos, preparing for the IPL season and in between, is busy learning Indian languages.

Published : Mar 28, 2020 13:05 IST , Mumbai

Mike Hesson making some notes in his residence as the coronavirus pandemic has forced people to stay indoors.
Mike Hesson making some notes in his residence as the coronavirus pandemic has forced people to stay indoors.

Mike Hesson making some notes in his residence as the coronavirus pandemic has forced people to stay indoors.

These days, Mike Hesson is learning a couple of Indian languages. To begin with, the seasoned New Zealand coach has opted for Hindi and Kannada.

As the country faces a 21-day lockdown due to the outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic, sitting at his plush home in Bengaluru, Hesson is making the most of the opportunity to get a grip over the new languages.

“I am starting to learn a couple of languages. When you are fully immersed in life, it takes a backseat. I am trying to change myself and trying to learn a little bit of the local languages,” Hesson told  Sportstar .

The New Zealand coach is no stranger to India. Apart from his coaching assignments, he keeps travelling to the country for commentary works.


“When you are in a different country, you try and learn its languages. I am learning Hindi and also a bit of Kannada. It’s a difficult language for sure, but I am trying my best to learn it,” he said. 

Being the director of cricket at the Royal Challengers Bangalore IPL franchise, Hesson would have otherwise had a busy schedule now, had the league commenced on schedule on March 29.  

But with the country coming to a standstill and the tournament suspended at least till April 15, Hesson has a ‘lot of time’ in hand. 

“I have been well taken care of by the RCB. I am still working. I am watching some cricket videos, taking down notes and planning for the season and beyond,” Hesson said.

Mike Hesson sharing a light moment with his daughters.

While he can’t step out, Hesson had a couple of gym sessions at home. 

“It is very important. I try and cook some meals, that takes a bit of time. Then, I read some books, talk to my girlfriend. That’s how it has been,” he says.

Every day, he makes it a point to call his daughters at home in New Zealand. “I call them at least twice a day. No doubt, I would have loved being at home with my girls, but that’s not possible, everyone is in a difficult position now,” the 45-year-old explained.

Earlier this month when Hesson arrived in India, things looked quite normal and travel restrictions were not implemented. However, things changed pretty quickly. 

“I was pretty busy from my work perspective. Once there was a lockdown here, there was also a lockdown in New Zealand. So, the situation had changed all over the world pretty drastically. Everyone knew what’s going to happen, but at that point of time, there were no flights and also no reason to go home…”

“I would be in isolation anyway. That way, I am safe in Bengaluru and is well looked after. We all are going through a tough and living far away from family at this time is very challenging,” Hesson said.

For someone like him, who is busy with coaching and commentary assignments throughout the year, it is not easy to find a break. And now that, he has got one, Hesson is maintaining a balance between work from home and finding some ‘me time’.

“I am still working and preparing for the season. But it’s about a balance and keeping your mind fully occupied and giving your mind a bit of break. I can’t sit here all day and watch TV…” he laughs. “I need to change the mind and try and be creative”

Life has been tough for the last few weeks and even Hesson hopes to connect with his daughters soon. After all, it is not easy to be living all alone; far, far away from home!  

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